By the Bay in Hyderabad will give you the feel of Marine Drive in Mumbai.
Finally, the banks of Hussain Sagar will feel like the famous Marine Drive of Mumbai. The only lakeside front in the twin cities, it has always had a lot going for it – amazing views, the placid waters of the lake and breathtaking sunsets with the Buddha Statue for company. It just got better thanks to a ‘sit-with-a-drink’ place called By The Bay – Bar Exchange, located on the Necklace Road. This new 170-seater lake-view restaurant is from the Surya Melange & Bistro group that gave the city The Lal Street – Bar Exchange, Gachibowli. “There aren’t many restaurants that allow you to experience the outdoors and the lake breeze. We hope to fill this gap,” says Sunil Jhunhunwala, Managing Director of the two-level restaurant where the price of the drinks fluctuate like stocks in the market. The dynamics of the day are reflected on the digital monitors.
Perfect for those who are addicted to their smartphones, you can place the order for your drinks through an app (food has another menu). A board in the first level gives away the wi-fi password and once you get connected, you can place your order. In line with their flagship restaurant, this one also tells you the rate of your drink in their exhaustive liquor menu.
The popular ones cost more (you can notice how the rate changes by a few rupees every minute, like in the Stock Exchange) and the other ones come for less – just like the watering holes, the Vault in Chennai and the Bar Stock Exchange in Mumbai. Every drink by default, is served small (30 ml), unless you want to buy a bottle. Their signature cocktail, a Sangria – with fruit pulp scooped and soaked in the wine – with a touch of molecular gastronomy, was our favourite. As you sip your drink and enjoy the live music (Wednesday to Sunday, 7 pm), you will notice the distinct Pirates of the Caribbean decor with surfboards and kayaks as props.
Head chef Venkataramana says he has ensured that the best of multi-cuisine menu is available at By the Bay. The emphasis on coastal delicacies – Andhra, Malabar, Konkan and Kerala. We loved the Kerala Style Pepper Prawn which is spicy and crisp. For the veggies, the Malai Broccoli – light and melt-in-the mouth – works great as a starter. Besides, we sampled the Goa Ghee Roast Prawns and Gobi Manchirian with desiccated coconut seasoning and a distinct coastal flavour. They have the regular biryanis and fried rice like other full-fledged restaurants around. The best bit, however, is that By The Bay is one of the first new-age restaurants on this side of Hussain Sagar. Time to pop a bubbly and celebrate, perhaps, by the lake.